By Arkady Petrov
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The Favela Mundo NGO will allocate ten percent of free vocational workshops to transgender people starting in July. The vacancies are part of the “A Arte Gerando Renda” (Art Generating Income) project, which proposes accelerated entrepreneurship and training courses on samba focused on the 2020 Carnaval.
The classes will be held in Cidade de Deus and Coelho Neto, favela communities in Rio de Janeiro. In total, there will be 300 seats for each community.
According to the NGO’s founder and project director, Marcello Andriotti, the reservation of vacancies for the trans population stemmed from a pilot project carried out in April this year in the Rocinha favela, in São Conrado, Rio de Janeiro. Four transgender students attended the workshop provided on site.
“If it’s going so well, why don’t we leave a percentage of openings for those who have such a history of prejudice, a stigma that the entire trans population ends up in prostitution?”, asked Andriotti.
A student from the Rocinha workshop, Bruna Alcântara says that the experience in the project was unique. “They have allowed many transgender people here in the community. I felt very welcome, I made friends there. Everyone’s very polite and welcoming. Many people do not know the LGBT world and are a little apprehensive. Not the professionals in the project, but the students,” she said, pointing out, however, that there were no issues with her classmates in the course.
The project offers workshops on costumes and props, social makeup, artistic makeup, decorated nails, crafts, turbans, and afro braids.
According to Bruna Alcântara, the workshops help in qualifying for the job market. She says she took a crafts course, learned how to customize clothes, and also intends to attend a make-up workshop. Currently, she is not working, but her dream is to become a hairdresser.
The goal of the project A Arte Gerando Renda is to provide opportunities for favela residents who are willing to work with art, but do not possess the basic knowledge to work in samba associations or even to enter the job market. Each course has a duration of ten weeks. Classes are held weekly. In the end, the attendees receive certificates and will be able to do traineeships in samba schools or theater productions.
In 2014, the Favela Mundo NGO was recognized by the United Nations (UN) as a model of social inclusion in large cities.